Ketcham family trip to England and France, 1937-1938, and road trip from Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania to Mexico, 1939.
Rodney K. Ketcham Collection:
This large collection of 8mm and 16mm amateur films by Rodney Kenneth Ketcham is familial, yet international, in scope, showing both travel throughout the United States and abroad and domestic home movie scenes. Content notes are from Dr. Ketcham’s daughter Jerri Ketcham McDermott.
Dr. Rodney Kenneth Ketcham (1909-2002), grew up in Lestershire, New York. Dr. Ketcham was a Cornell graduate (B.A. 1929, M.A. 1930, Ph.D. 1938), teaching high school in Windsor, NY, and serving as a reader and assistant at Cornell to pay his way through graduate school. He found a position teaching Romance Languages at Geneva College in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania, in 1938. During World War II the Army instead assigned him to teach math at Geneva to newly incoming GIs. After the war, he returned home to become a founding faculty member at Triple Cities College (TCC) in Endicott. In the 1950s, TCC joined the State University of New York system as Harpur College (now Binghamton University), and later moved to a new campus across the Susquehanna River in Vestal, NY. Dr. Ketcham became full professor, teaching French, Spanish, and German, and also served as chairman of the Foreign Languages Department, first at Geneva, then at Harpur College, and later at SUNY Cortland. Dr. Ketcham’s expertise in many languages and his love of nature, culture, and foreign climes led to his being a lifetime world traveler and photographer. Dr. Ketcham used his pictures of foreign landscapes, cityscapes, and, in particular, signs, to enrich his classes, giving both a language lesson and the flavor of the countryside to students who had never traveled abroad. He was also a popular presenter at local schools, clubs, and travel groups.
People appearing include: Rodney Kenneth Ketcham; wife: Helen Robinson Ketcham; son: Dale Ketcham & wife Jeanne Ann Means; their children Janet & Stuart; daughter: Jerri (Jerrine) Ketcham McDermott; brother: Henry Crocker Ketcham & wife Alice Myers Ketcham; their children Walter & Bruce; parents: Louis B. Ketcham & Edith Crocker Ketcham; aunts & uncles: Henry Hathaway Ketcham; Herman & Verna Ketcham; their daughter Vera Atwater & her children Nancy & Betsy; Grant & Ella Crocker; Helen’s parents: Charles & Irene Bross; Helen’s maternal grandmother Addie Wolcott & husband Amos Wolcott; Addie’s later companion John Emert (“Grandpa John”); Helen’s brother: Robert Robinson
Original films and copyright held by the Center for Home Movies.
Sept. 1937 on board the American Trader, New York to Tilbury, England
London, Greenwich, Windsor Castle, Eton, Cambridge, Stratford-on-Avon, Kenilworth
Oxford with Harvey Wellman
Marseilles, views of and from Le Pont Transbordeur Ferry Bridge
Grenoble, Les Bruns, Family with whom Ketchams obtained room and board
Ile Rousseau in Geneva, Switzerland, monument to Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Women scrubbing clothes on stones, old side of Grenoble
Return to New York City (out of chronological order)
Helen Ketcham with sabots
Palm trees, white cliffs in south of France, Nice, Monte Carlo, Monaco
Beach en route to Marseilles
Arena in Arles
Mexico and West, 1939
Leaving Beaver Falls, PA
Chicago street scenes; Loop, El, Buckingham fountain
Rock Island, Illinois
Great Salt Lake, Utah
Sunrise Point rock formations, Bryce Canyon, Utah
San Francisco, Golden Gate, Oakland, Palomar Observatory
Dead coyotes on fence, Mexican kids and highway scenes, motel
Mexico City, floating gardens of Xochilmilco
Popocatepetl, houses, pyramids, bullfights
Dancing at summer school
Trip to Puebla and Forin
Return to United States
Texas: Alamo, Galveston
Louisiana: picking cotton, Spanish moss, bayou, Evangeline Parish
Kentucky: tobacco barn
Return to Beaver Falls
RightsOriginal films and copyright held by the Center for Home Movies
May 30, 2017 Subject:
A wonderful period travelogue.
Some the framing and holding of the camera is superb. Covering many of the sites that are still to this day on the US -> UK travelling circuit. This include Stratford-on-Avon which co-incidentally is where I originate from!
I would like to explore the possibilities of licensing some clips for a film about Charlie Chaplin who almost followed this route on his 1952 trip to the UK. Please contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss.